What: An unusual promotional concept, from the team behind The Reliant.
Who: Hercules: The Legendary Journeys star Kevin Sorbo, NFL player-turned-d-minus-action star Brian Bosworth, and filmmaker/family practice physician Dr. J.P Johnston.
Why we care: During the filming of his Oscar-winning documentary, Bowling for Columbine, Michael Moore was awarded a free hunting rifle at a bank in Michigan. He did so to prove a point about the need for gun control. Fifteen years and many mass shootings later, the team behind a film due out in 2018 is giving away an assault rifle to a fan selected by lottery–inadvertently proving Moore’s point about gun control by flaunting its current flimsiness.
It’s been less than two months since the Las Vegas massacre that left 59 dead and hundreds injured, but don’t tell that to Dr. J.P Johnston, the screenwriter and producer of The Reliant. Johnston has set up a promotion for the “faith-based action film” which gives away a DPMS AR-15 5.56/.223 caliber rifle. It’s a gun used in his film, and if it sounds familiar, that’s because it was also used to carry out that other recent massacre, the shooting in a Sutherland Springs, Texas church that killed over two dozen people. Anyone interested can head over to the film’s website.
The Reliant is a religious, “pro-second amendment” action film that follows a 19-year-old woman struggling to care for her four younger siblings during the chaotic aftermath of an economic collapse. The movie’s existence highlights the curious relationship between the religious right and the second amendment. (There is a chance that Jesus would not have been a fan of assault rifles in non-combat situations.) Somehow, the producers can only make their point that guns belong to everybody, because the Lord, with a dystopia backdrop. Never mind that the alarming frequency of shootings with assault rifles has added a lot to the country’s current dystopian aesthetic already.
Watch the trailer for The Reliant below, if you must.